On the end of December 2016, Garuda Indonesia release a promotion on award ticket redemption. Between 22nd December 2017 and 31st December 2017, you can get 90% off when you use Garudamiles for flight redemption on any route served by Garuda Indonesia. This promotion is available for traveling between 1st February 2017 and 31st May 2017.
I wanted to go to Japan from so long time ago. With this promotion I can redeem Jakarta-Tokyo vv award ticket for as low as 7,000 miles in economy class and 12,600 miles in business class.
At that time I have about 8,000 miles on my account. I need another 4,600 miles to redeeming business class award ticket. So I decided to purchase 5,000 miles for IDR 1,375,000.00. I also had to pay another IDR 1,360,400.00 for fuel surcharge, taxes, insurance, etc. So cash that I paid for Jakarta – Tokyo vv in business class is only IDR 2,735,400.00. The retail price of Garuda Indonesia business class on this route is around IDR 36,000,000.00. So this price is a steal!
Garuda Indonesia 874
Jakarta (CGK) to Tokyo (HND)
Date: 25th May 2017
Depart: 23.30 (scheduled 23.35)
Arrive: 08.31 (scheduled 08.50)
Duration: 7 hours 1 minute
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300ER
I was so lucky, from 1st May 2017 all Garuda Indonesia international flight is departing and arriving from Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta’s Terminal 3 Ultimate. This is a brand new terminal, with high ceiling and floor-to-ceiling window the terminal feels very spacious and airy. But if I compare to the old international terminals, for some reasons I feel that this terminal is ‘less Indonesia’. Don’t get me wrong, this terminal is way more better than the old one. I just feel that this terminal losing their ‘identity of Indonesia’.
Check-in desk for Garuda Indonesia international flight is located in the left end of Terminal. There area a few dedicated check in desk for premium cabin passengers (separated between first class and business class), as well for Skyteam elite and elite plus members. Check-in process was a breeze, it takes less than 10 minutes to complete.
In no time, I already leaving check-in area towards security check area and immigration. There is a special ‘red carpet’ line in the security check area for premium cabin passenger also members of Skytem elite and elite plus. I manage my time to visit Garuda Indonesia international business class lounge for a few minutes.
This flight departed from Gate U9. Boarding started about 45 minutes before scheduled departure time. The boarding sequence is first class passenger, members of Skyteam elite & elite plus, business class Passenger, and economy class passenger. Boarding process was so smooth and very well organized.
I boarded the airplane through door 2L, and were greeted by friendly pursers, who pointed me left towards my seat. Garuda Indonesia’s business class on this 777-300ER configuration consist of 42 Sogerma Solstys stagerred flat bed seats in 1-2-1 configuration, guarantee direct aisle access for all business class passenger.
Business class cabin divided in two section: mini cabin (front) and main cabin (back). In my opinion, the mini cabin (where I seated) is better choice. With only 10 seats, this cabin feels more intimate and more private. If you need more privacy, you should choose the ‘true’ window seat which you’ll find in even numbered seat (mini cabin) and odd numbered seat (main cabin).
The seat pitch in business class is 73″, so it is really comfortable for 7 hours journey. In Flight Entertainment (IFE) is powered by Panasonic Avionics with 15″ touch screen monitor and a standard hand held monitor. The entertainment option is quite decent, prevent me to get bored on this flight.
After I settled in, a friendly purser come and offer me a hot towel and welcome drink. The choices is between juice, champagne, or mineral water. Considering that they serve Billecart Salmon Brut Rose in business class, with no doubt I go with the champagne.
Waiting at my seat prior to boarding were an amenity kit, noise-cancelling headphone, pillow, duvet, and a bottle of mineral water. The amenity kit was stocked with Clarins branded products: cologne, lip balm, hand cream, and body lotion. Also there is a toothbrush set, ear plug, hair comb, and sleepers. The amenity kit different from what I expect, since Garuda publish that they provide their award winning L’occitane amenity kit in International business class.
Due to taxiway renovation in Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, taxiing process taking quite a while. As usual, the IFE play safety demonstration video while taxiing.
We finally manage to take off after about 30 minutes of taxiing and reaching cruising altitude about 45 minutes after take off. Shortly after in the cruising altitude, seat belt sign and cabin lighting is turned off. Garuda replacing the cabin lighting with artificial night sky ambiance. At this point, most of the passenger are getting ready to sleep.
Garuda Indonesia 777-300ER is equipped with time-based system in-flight connectivity (WiFi). First class passenger are entitled to use this facility for free, while business and economy class passenger have to pay a certain amount to using this facility. Considering they use time based system, I think the price is pretty affordable.
I pay about IDR 300,000.00 for 24 hour connection, which will cover my connectivity for the entire flight. The connection speed is pretty good and stable.
Garuda didn’t serve late night supper menu on this flight, instead the pursers only offer choices from In Between Fuel (IBF) menu to business class passenger. The IBF menu consist of Indonesian satay platter, fresh fruit platter, nachos, udon , and vietnamese roll. I go with vietnamese roll, accompanied with a glass of martini.
For some reason, I not get a long really well with the vietnamese roll. I can’t finish it, so I order an udon instead, accompanied with a glass of mineral water.
For me, the udon taste much better than the vietnamese roll. After I finish my udon, I order another glass of martini and a glass of baileys to help me sleep better.
I slept for a solid 3 hours. I woke up and found that I already flying above Okinawa, means I will arrive in Tokyo in a few more hours. Roughly 1 hour before arrival schedule, a purser come to my seat and offering me for breakfast. The breakfast is consist of bread, cereal, fruit platter, and Indonesian yellow rice.
Shortly after finishing my breakfast, captain make an announcement that airplane soon will arrive in Tokyo International Airport. The seat belt sign and cabin light is turned on, descending toward Tokyo. Our descend is quite bumpy, due to bad weather above Tokyo. We landed in Tokyo International Airport at 08.31.
I disembark from the airplane after first class passengers also members of Skyteam elite and elite plus. After that I go straight to immigration desk. Unfortunately, Tokyo International Airport doesn’t have dedicated immigration line for premium cabin passenger. But the queuing is not bad tho, so immigration process was cleared less than 30 minutes.
Garuda Indonesia really made a huge improvements in the past few years. Garuda 777-300ER business class truly offer a solid product. This type of aircraft provides a high level of comfort for inter-continental long haul route, so of course it is really comfortable for Jakarta to Tokyo route which only take about 7 hours.
Despite my concern regarding food and amenity kit, overall Garuda Indonesia reach my expectation on this flight.
Author doesn’t affiliate and not earn anything from the brands mentioned on this post.